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Fatal Crash on Onondaga Lake Parkway

Onondaga County Sheriff Kevin Walsh reported that Sheriff's Deputies are continuing the investigation of the fatal crash on Onondaga Lake Parkway on August 16 that claimed the life of a North Syracuse woman.

At approximately 12:33 p.m., Sheriff's Deputies and rescue crews were called to the Onondaga Lake Parkway, just south of the railroad bridge to investigate a four car crash that claimed the life of Mary Denny, 40, of 101 Coolidge Road.

Witnesses told deputies that a 2003 Volkswagen Jetta, operated by Matthew Stephan, 22, of 3730 Theodolite Drive in Baldwinsville, was seen traveling south on Onondaga Lake Parkway at a high rate of speed attempting to pass another southbound vehicle. Stephan began passing the other vehicle on the left, crossing the center median markings and entered the northbound lane when he collided head on with a 2007 Ford Taurus, operated by Denny.

The impact from the crash forced the victim's Taurus into a 2002 Chevrolet pickup, operated by Donna Tartaglia, 48, of 706 Oswego Street in Liverpool, and caused Tartaglia off the east side of the roadway. The engine from Stephan's car was ripped from the Jetta's frame and debris was scattered across all four lanes of the Parkway.

A fourth vehicle, a 2000 Dodge Caravan, operated by Robert Phillips, 35, of 5937 Farrington Road in Cicero, was also traveling north when he inadvertently struck Stephan's engine, which was in the middle of the roadway.

Rescue crews from the Liverpool and Mattydale Fire Departments responded, and paramedics pronounced Denny dead on the scene. The victim's passenger Kristen Kelly, 20, of 330 Plymouth Drive in Syracuse, sustained non-life threatening injuries and was transported to University Hospital. Stephan also sustained multiple injures and was transported to University Hospital for treatment. Tartaglia was not injured, yet was transported to a local hospital for evaluation and Phillips was not injured.

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